This year I have seen a large increase in the number of Citrix NetScaler projects we have been engaged on. Citrix NetScaler is a proven and simple platform for application high availability and optimisation at the network level. We see NetScalers being used primarily for load balancing with web caching and Global Server Load Balancing (GSLB) also commonly being deployed.
In Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Application Delivery Controllers (Oct 2012) only Citrix NetScaler, F5 and Radware are in the Magic Quadrant. In New Zealand the biggest competition to Citrix NetScaler is F5. Given we are a Citrix focused business most of our clients are running Citrix XenApp or Citrix XenDesktop so when we have a conversation around application delivery controllers the benefits of NetScaler over F5 are easier to quantify; with every edition of NetScaler comes Access Gateway Enterprise Edition so you can use one device for both application delivery/load balancing and remote access. Yes, I know F5 also have integration into XenApp and XenDesktop for remote access, but why introduce another vendor into the stack? Especially when the are questions whether remote access via F5 is supported by Citrix.
If you’re already a Citrix customer, keep it simple and stick with Citrix end-to-end. That is one of Citrix’s points of difference; their end-to-end product suite from client & desktop to networking to server. If you are not already a Citrix customer then the choice is more difficult. Look closely at your requirements, evaluate the products and obtain some pricing.
You can read theGartner Magic Quadrant for Application Delivery Controllers report here.
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